67 Matching Annotations
  1. Oct 2018
    1. defile that bright lady with pollution and with stain. But the Judge of Glory, Warden of Power, did not wish to consent to that deed

      Whose consent? Not Judith's, but God's!

    2. likewise reward in heaven, victorious recompense in the glory of the skies

      Earthly treasures as an image of heavenly

    3. Bear your shields forth

      Judith sends them into battle

    4. gave that to the bright and clever-thoughted woman

      Her victory treated as a military one

    5. brought as a reward from that venture the sword and bloody helmet of Holofernes, and also his broad mail-shirt, adorned with red gold, and all that the arrogant lord of warriors owned of treasure or moveable goods,

      Trophies and loot

    6. space of one month carried and led

      that's a long time!

    7. There was not one of the nobles though who dared to wake up that warfaring man or to discover how the warrior had done with that holy woman, the maiden of the Measurer.

      dramatic irony

    8. the lean wolf in the wold rejoiced, and the dark raven, a bird greedy for slaughter

      beasts of battle

    9. unwrap the head of that warrior and to display it

      Holofernes's head displayed publicly, as trophy

    10. Trinity


    11. Son of the All-Wielding


    12. he Savior’s glorious servant

      Reference to Christ

    13. ferocious one

      Look at his description in this portion

    14. IX.

      Not in MS; X, XI, & XII are, later, so this must be part of IX

    1. I uncovered the miracle of the bright cross, as I found it in books

      Cynewulf—and we—also discover the cross, thru books

    2. you know so fully in your memory all the individual deeds of the Trojans done through battle

      Great respect for Jewish historical knowledge and writing. Thinking of Josephus here?

    3. oaded the wave-stallions with battle-serks, shields and spears, byrnied warriors, both men and women

      men AND women: Elene is not the only woman

  2. Sep 2018
    1. Elene gave him yet again precious gifts

      Elene as gift-giver

    2. commanded the cross to be adorned with gold and the kindred of gems, with the most noble of precious jewels surrounded with crafty skill and locked up with a clasp inside a silver vessel.

      crux gemmata

    3. most wretched of sorrows to the Jews, men accursed, most despised of fates, for they could not turn it away for the world


    4. warrior

      Judas as warrior now too

    5. Judas

      Other Judas

    6. ninth hour

      Time of Jesus's death Matt 27:45–50

    7. gold-hoard

      Rood as gold-hoard

    8. Parallel w/ Constantine

    9. Judas lofted up a word, revealing his courage, and he spoke in Hebrew:

      Judas's prayer in Hebrew. Invokes Scripture: creation, fall of angels

    10. he was named Judas by his kinsmen— him they gave unto the queen,

      Quick to turn over Judas!

    11. seven nights in his sorrow under the harm-closure, tortured by hunger


    12. Tree of Life,

      Genesis, Paradise

    13. stiff

      stiff again

    14. a loaf and a stone both together in his sight, hard and soft

      stone imagery vs bread

    15. a blazing pyre

      Elene begins threats

    16. than

      imagery: stiff, stony

    17. Stephen

      Stephen is Judas's brother Family set apart from other Jews How OLD is Judas??

    18. How

      Explanation of majority choice; Sachius demurred

    19. Judas

      Judas already knows what they've done wrong—and remains obstinate because admitting will mark the end of Jewish power

    20. We do not readily know so far why you are severely wrathful with us, lady. We know not what sin that we have performed in this folk-share, nor any great evil we have made against you.”

      Read sympathetically?

    21. you had opposed the Righteous One, rejecting the Radiant Shaper of us all, the Lord of Lords, and persisting in error
    22. Elene spoke and before those nobles said

      Elene's speech: Hebrew Bible as prophesying Christ

    23. wisdom

      Condemns Jews generally here & following

    24. Condemns all the Jewish wise men

    25. Never have I heard before or since that a woman led a fairer force upon the water’s current, over the sea’s street

      Elene as military leader

    26. queen of warfare

      Elene as military

    27. kenning

    28. kenning

    29. Elene's first appearance; not named until 4th line after

    30. led astray the Jewish kind

      Jews all lumped together as deceived & crucifiers

    31. raven rejoiced these works, dewy-feathered, the eagle observed this journeying, the slaughter-cruel warriors. The wolf

      Beasts again

    32. Then

      Start of dream

    33. raven

      Third beast; wolf & raven earlier

    34. giants

      Germanic or Roman bldgs as made by giants?

    35. wolf in the wold chanted his war-song, not concealing the secrets of slaughter. The wet-winged eagle

      Beasts of battle motif

    1. feasceaft

      Scyld's origins as "feasceaft," destitute, contrast with his rich conquests later in life: the "meodosetla" he takes (5) and the "gomban" ("tribute," 11) he receives. The opening lines thus establish reversal of fortune as a theme while showing Scyld as a powerful warrior and successful war leader. Edward B. Irving describes how appropriate "the Scyld proem" (as he calls it, 44) is for the rest of the poem in foreshadowing what Beowulf will do and experience, A Reading of Beowulf, 2nd ed. (Provo, UT: The Chaucer Studio, 1999), 44–5. Francis Leneghan argues for the originality of the Scyld episode in “Reshaping Tradition" and argues that Scyld's status as a foundling in a ship and his climb to rule parallels Moses.

    2. Scyld Scefing

      We move from hearing of "Gardena" in general to their exemplar and greatest hero, Scyld Scefing. Roy Liuzza notes that the name means "Shield, Son of Sheaf," in his translation, 2nd ed. (Peterborough, ONT: Broadview Press, 2013), note 2 on page 49. The name connects the Danes' hero with both war ("Shield") and agricultural production ("Sheaf"): he makes his people victorious and well-fed. For more on the name, see Francis Leneghan, “Reshaping Tradition: The Originality of the Scyld Scefing Episode in Beowulf,” in Transmission and Generation in Medieval and Renaissance Literature: Essays in Honour of John Scattergood, edited by Karen Hodder and‎ Brendan O'Connell (Dublin: Four Courts Press, 2012), 21–36.

    3. god

      God's role in the reversal of fortune is explicit here: God sends Scyld as a comfort to the Danes for previous bad fortune (perhaps the rule of Heremod, which appears later in the poem, at 1709–24). The poet suggests that God protects even those who are not Christian, for we will see that the Danes are not, and some are even said to offer sacrifices to demons after Grendel's attack (175–88). On reversal of fortune as a structural device in the opening of the poem, see Irving, A Reading of Beowulf, 32.

    4. Beowulf wæs breme blæd

      A lovely example of the power of alliteration: Beowulf's name is associated even before the hero appears with fame ("Beowulf was breme") and power or renown ("blæd") using sound.

    5. geong

      Youth is contrasted with age ("ylde") two lines later: men must behave in certain ways in their youth to affect their later fortune. Fortune is not completely outside one's control.

    6. Beowulf

      This editor chose to keep the manuscript reading "Beowulf"; the editors of Klaeber 4 emended to "Beow." In their Commentary on line 18f (page 113), they note that "Beow" fits the meter in "Beowulf"'s second appearance at 53, and that traditional genealogies provide the name "Beow." However, I prefer the choice (as does Liuzza in his translation): whether poet or scribe, someone has made the name match that of the poem's protagonist. An earlier hero foreshadows a later.

    7. Him

      This use of the dative through me momentarily. With "Scyld gewat," it sounds like the archaic "Scyld betook himself," but it's not a direct object (because not an accusative) as a reflexive would be. I take it as a dative of interest: instead of saying a place where Scyld departed from or for, the construction indicates that Scyld departed himself—separated from life, or died.

    8. brimes faroðe

      Scyld came on a ship as an infant, and now his body will leave on a ship. The reversal of fortune motif comes full circle in a sense, for he leaves as he came. Yet a little after this passage, we do read of a difference: his arrival with nothing contrasts explicitly with his rich send-off (43–6).

    9. frofre

      "frofre" reappears just seven lines after its first appearance. Scyld had his comfort, but he also was comfort to the people. Again, reversal of fortune appears at the very start of the text.

    10. god

      Because Old English scribes did not distinguish between "God" and "good," this usage may give modern readers pause: we may look for a noun to go with "god" thinking that it is the adjective "good." But it really is the noun "God."

    11. Gardena

      The relationship of the two genitives is unclear: did "we learn of the might of the Spear-Danes, of the people-kings," as two separate things: the deeds of some people-kings (who may have been all Danes, or note) and the deeds of Danes? Or did "we learn of the might of the people-kings OF the Spear-Danes," which is narrower? The poem leaves the choice to the reader.

    12. gefrunon

      The grammar here is a little confusing: "gefrunon," "we learned," or "we heard," has two different kinds of objects. The first is a simple direct object: "we heard the might." The second is a clause "we heard how the nobles did courageous deeds."

    13. sceaþena þreatum, monegum mægþum

      The two consecutive datives make the sentence ambiguous. They could be in apposition: Scyld may be taking mead benches from "troops of enemies, many peoples." However, he could just as easily taking mead benches "by troops of enemes from many peoples." R.D. Fulk, Robert E. Bjork, and John D. Niles note both possibilities in their note to 4–5, Klaeber's Beowulf and the Fight at Finnsburh, 4th ed. (Toronto: University of Toronto Press, 2008), in their Commentary, page 111.

    14. .

      Here and at 1, "Hwæt.", the edition uses periods instead of commas. Many editions and translations use exclamation points at one or both places, which changes the tone. Eric Weiskott notes that the exclamation point was hundreds of years in the future when the manuscript was written: “Making Beowulf Scream: Exclamation and the Punctuation of Old English Poetry,” Journal of English and Germanic Philology 111.1 (2012), 25–41. DOI: 10.5406/jenglgermphil.111.1.0025

    15. I wish this page said whose edition this is and when it appeared. Without that information, I do not know how scholarly or dated the edition may be.